When we look at the story of Peter walking on the water, it’s not just risk-taking, but a picture of extreme discipleship. Often, when we talk about stewardship, we talk about time, talent, and treasure. But we must be good stewards of truth and our trust in God. We cannot be careless with our faith, but very intentional. God is not against stuff, but the total of our faith must be for more than stuff.
“The sum total of our faith can’t be on something that will depreciate in 2 years.” – Pastor Roy Barrett
The culmination (purification) of our faith is for the saving of our own souls. When we look at Abraham’s faith, we see it touched many generations. If my faith can’t touch 3 generations, we are not being good stewards of our faith. Our faith is the tool God wants to use to change the world. We MUST be stewards of our faith!
“It is only Christians that try to accommodate our faith to fit other people.” – Pastor Roy Barrett
We’ve raised a generation of believers that think the sole purpose of walking with God is to reach comfort. But the goal of God isn’t comfort but conversion. The essence of consecration is to change up our patterns to get something new. If we are unwilling to change, how will we grow? To move you must throw away something.
“I don’t want to be ordinary.” – Oral Roberts
In 2 Timothy, it talks about dishes that were ordinary, and others that were used for a special purpose. Power flows the purity. If you want to be used for more than ordinary, it is a function of your level of consecration. To be all that God desires us to be we must develop intentional faith!
How Do We Develop Intentional Faith?
I Must Have Disciplined Submission
Peter said to Jesus, “If it’s You, bid me to come and I will.” This is important, because Peter asked for permission to come. His initial instruction was to get in the boat to go to the other side. So no matter how difficult or uncomfortable the circumstances were, he was not willing to disobey the first instruction without permission from Jesus. He is not the self-governing authority of his life. This is being submitted to the instructions given, even when you don’t understand.
Submission says my faith is only as strong as my obedience to His call. Faith requires obedience! We must be submitted to His authority!
“It’s hard to be faith-filled when you are not in your place.” – Pastor Roy Barrett
Don’t fall prey to the big 3 as these will cause you to change the instruction, and not be submitted:
- I thought…
- I felt…
- I assume…
I Must Have Disciplined Direction
When Peter stepped out of the boat, he was operating in a new level of authority, power, and freedom. The scripture says that Peter got out of the boat to go to Jesus. Intentional faith must have direction: Jesus. You and I might not be responsible for creating hostile conditions (I.e. storm), but we are always responsible for the direction we head while in these conditions.
“Ministry is easy when you live from the overflow of being with Him.” – Pastor Roy Barrett
We must be in pursuit of Him. Question: When do we pursue Him, outside of ministry responsibilities? The greatest gift we can give people who are following us is the gift of being close to Him.
I Must Have Disciplined Expectations
As soon as Peter saw the wind and the waves he started to sink. It was a storm when he started walking, yet somewhere, Peter started expecting things to change. Intentional faith recognizes that I can’t expect God to change things where He never said He would. Obedience doesn’t mean that the conditions will change. Rather it means that we will have the strength to keep walking in the conditions. We might prefer for the conditions to change, but we must discipline our expectations to stay in line with what He has promised. Oftentimes the door to offense is blaming God for not responding to our preference.
“God is faithful to His promise, not your preference.” – Pastor Roy Barrett
I Must Have Disciplined Conclusions
Now as Peter begins to sink, he calls out to Jesus to save Him. When they got in the boat, the scripture says, “the storm ceased and the people responded saying “Truly You are the Son of God.” In Mark 6, we see that Jesus see them struggling, but had intended to pass them by. We must rest in not when He will deliver us, but that he sees me. He intended not to stop! Struggle your way to the other side. Because I will not let the path of least resistance be the hallmark of your faith.
My conclusion cannot be measured by the event itself, but by the change in lives. We see from the text, that the conclusion of the disciples was “Truly You are the Son of God.” The conclusion is not that Peter failed, but that the disciples perspective on Jesus was redefined.
“Leadership is redefining people’s reality.” – Pastor Roy Barrett